Events at the Byron Colby Barn
The beautifully restored Byron Colby Barn in Grayslake offers concerts and other events to foster lifelong learning and a sense of community.


Concerts are BYOB, so feel free to bring a bottle of wine to share with friends.


Incredible performances and architectural beauty combine to create a unique experience. Join us at the following events!

The Early Music Series features highly acclaimed musicians performing music from the Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque periods. The 2013-2014 Early Music Series brochure features descriptions of each performance - pick up a brochure at a performance for yourself, and one for a friend! 


Remaining performances in the 12th season of the Early Music Series include:

  • Sunday, February 9 at 4 p.m. - Such Sweete Melodie
  • Sunday, March 2 at 4 p.m. - Secret of the Muses
  • Sunday, March 23 at 4 p.m. - Rook

Admission to Early Music concerts is $18 for adults, and is available at the door only (cash or check only). To inspire early appreciation for the arts, children under 16 are admitted free to Early Music Series concerts.


Like us on Facebook "Like" the Early Music Series on Facebook!

Such Sweete Melodie Performs Feb. 9   


A hundred years before Vivaldi and Telemann, European composers were creating the music that ushered in the Baroque and Classical periods. Monteverdi made vocalists soar, Tarquinio Merula rebalanced musical minimalism, and Schmelzer's violin virtuosity resulted in the Stylus Phantasticus.  


Such Sweete Melodie explores this intoxicating 17th century music at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 9. Join Lindsey Adams, one of the Midwest's most sought-after vocalists; Alice Culin-Ellison, Baroque violinist; and a 17th continuo band including theorbo, lute, violone, Baroque guitar, lirone, and an original 1590 Italian virginal for this stunning performance.


Admission is $18 at the door only (cash or check only) - children under 16 are free. This performance is part of the Early Music Series at the Byron Colby Barn.

"Music From Petrucci's Press" on Mar. 2    


16th century Venice was vibrant with music and art, though declining in commercial and military power. Ottaviano Petrucci's music publications - the first to feature polyphony using movable type - were enormously popular and helped establish Franco-Flemish music as the dominant style for the next century.


Secret of the Muses explores "Music From Petrucci's Press" at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Mar. 2 including selections by Alexander Agricola, Tromboncino, Cara, Spinacino, and Dalza. Secret of the Muses features Stephanie Sheffield (soprano), Patrick O'Malley (recorder), Joel Spears (lute), and Phillip Serna (viol).


Admission is $18 at the door only (cash or check only) - children under 16 are free. This performance is part of the Early Music Series at the Byron Colby Barn.

Joel Spears - Artistic Director of the Early Music Series 

Joel Spears

Joel Spears is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Early Music at the Byron Colby Barn, and an active lutenist and guitarist based in the Chicago area.


Joel has performed both as a soloist and with ensembles of varying sizes such as Lyric Opera of Chicago, Chicago Opera Theater, Seraphic Fire, Ars Antigua, Bella Voce, Music of the Baroque, and The Chicago Early Music Consort. Joel is currently Lute Instructor at the Music Institute of Chicago.

Queen of the Sun film on Feb. 26 


Bees and Colony Collapse Disorder have received a lot of media attention. Why do bees matter? Bees are important for many reasons, and play a critical role in our food supply.


The Liberty Prairie Foundation will host a free film screening at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 26 at the Byron Colby Barn featuring Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us?, winner of 10 international film festival awards. Come learn about the bee's plight, why they matter, and what you can do to make a difference.


Queen of the Sun is a profound, alternative look at the global bee crisis from the award-winning director of The Real Dirt on Farmer John. Taking us on a journey through the catastrophic disappearance of bees and the mysterious world of the beehive, this alarming and ultimately uplifting film weaves together a dramatic story of the heart-felt struggles of beekeepers, scientists and philosophers around the world. 


After the film mingle with Prairie Crossing farmers and local beekeepers, learn about Conserve Lake County's Conservation@Home program, and another conservation topic - carsharing - with representatives from Zipcar. This event is co-sponsored by Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods and Conserve Lake County.


Uncorked! Wine Tasting on Mar. 7   


Join the Grayslake Rotary Club in celebrating their 3rd Annual Uncorked! Wine Tasting from 5:30 - 9 p.m. on Friday, March 7 at the Byron Colby Barn.


The tasting will feature a variety of wines to sample and order, accompanied by tasty hors d'oeuvres. Tickets for this "over 21" event are $25 per person and are available at the door or in advance by contacting Mike Kukulski at


100% of the funds raised will benefit local area food pantries, the Oasis Grayslake Youth Center, Grayslake High School scholarships, and worldwide polio eradication. Click for additional information about the Uncorked! Wine Tasting.  

Need Transportation?


Zipcar, Chicagoland's largest car sharing organization, is now at Prairie Crossing! As a unique and sustainable alternative to car ownership, Zipcar is consistent with the "Convenient and Efficient Transportation" Guiding Principle of Prairie Crossing. Visit the Prairie Crossing Zipcar website for reduced-price memberships!


Prairie Crossing is accessible via Metra's Milwaukee District North and North Central (weekdays only) lines. Enjoy a leisurely train ride to Prairie Crossing, cross Route 137 to pick up your reserved Zipcar at Station Square, and "zip" to the Byron Colby Barn. 

About the Byron Colby Barn

The beautifully restored Byron Colby Barn is named for the local dairy farmer who built it in 1885. Scheduled for demolition in 1992, this historic dairy barn was instead expertly deconstructed and rebuilt in Prairie Crossing, a nationally known conservation community.


The  Byron Colby Barn is located at 1561 Jones Point Road in Grayslake. From I-94, exit Route 120 west, turn south at Route 45, then right at Jones Point Road. Ample free parking is located adjacent to the Barn. 


The Byron Colby Barn is owned and operated by the Liberty Prairie Foundation, a 503(c)(3) non-profit organization, and is used in support of our mission. The Byron Colby Barn's various uses are aligned with the Prairie Crossing guiding principles of life-long learning, a sense of community, and a sense of place.  

Private Barn Rentals

As a beautiful and unique venue, the Barn is very popular for private rentals. Hold your special event at the Byron Colby Barn!


The Byron Colby Barn was named the 2011 Best Budget Wedding Venue by Chicago Magazine, and can be rented 7 days a week for elegant weddings, professional meetings, intimate concerts, and other events.

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Byron Colby Barn at Prairie Crossing
1561 Jones Point Road
Grayslake, IL 60030

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